Straw hair? With these tips you can keep them soft and supple
Frizzy, dull, brittle: Is strawy hair high on your list of personal frustration triggers? That doesn't have to be the case. We'll tell you how you can transform brittle hair (again) into the smooth, shiny hair of your dreams. Our holistic all-round tips for hair care, important nutrients and helpful home remedies provide you with all the beauty secrets for silky Rapunzel hair.
Photo on the left by Yan Krukau
What strawy hair has to do with the hair growth cycle
If your hair "suddenly" feels drier than the sand of the Sahara, it's helpful to know: The cause of hair loss and strawy hair can lie months ago. A look at the hair growth cycle explains why this is the case.
The hair growth cycle consists of three phases:
- Growth phase: New hair forms, grows and pushes up along the hair canal. Normally around 90% of hair is in this phase, which can last between 2 and 6 years.
- Transition phase: Growth stops during this phase, which lasts 14 days. The hair's nutrient supply is cut off and the hair is prepared for shedding. Approximately 1% of hair is in this phase 1 .
- Resting phase: Although the hair is no longer firmly anchored, it does not fall out immediately. It is retained in the upper layers of skin on the scalp for up to three months before it leaves your head. 15% of the hair is in this phase 2 .
And now be careful: Certain trigger factors can cause an abrupt increase in hair from the growth phase to the resting phase . However, you will notice the consequences with a delay - usually two to three months later - when brittle, straw-like hair and diffuse hair loss become noticeable. Let’s take a closer look at this connection below.
Do you know these causes of strawy, brittle hair?
Did you start a crash diet about three months ago, were you sick, or were you going through a particularly stressful time in your life? The fact is: Some causes of brittle and increasingly falling hair can only be clearly identified in retrospect.
- Stress : This category includes physical stress, caused by (chronic) illnesses and fever, as well as psychological stress, such as a toxic working environment. But: Giving birth also means stress for the body. If you are a new mother and it hasn't been that long since your child's arrival, this could be due to increased hair loss, brittle and brittle hair 2 .
- Hormonal changes : Typical phases for hormonal imbalances are menopause, but also the period after pregnancy and breastfeeding. The then lower estrogen level is considered to be an influencing factor for diffuse hair loss and unhealthy-looking hair 2 .
- Thyroid diseases : The hormones from the thyroid have a direct influence on our hair growth. To be on the safe side, you should have brittle, straw-like hair in conjunction with other symptoms of a thyroid disorder such as depression and/or fatigue checked by a doctor.
- Extreme diets : A persistent calorie deficit can cause diffuse hair loss. The same applies if you consume too few proteins, essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals overall. The negative effects usually become noticeable two to four months later 3 .
- Iron deficiency : Women who are iron deficient are at higher risk of diffuse hair loss and its symptoms 4 . The background: We need iron to transport oxygen in the blood. Our cells depend on oxygen - including the cells that are responsible for hair growth.
- Certain medications : antidepressants, blood thinners, “the pill”, but also beta blockers and retinoids can lead to diffuse hair loss and a changed hair structure after around 12 weeks of use. Please mention this at your next medical examination; there is often an alternative medication.
As if this list wasn't long enough, there are also some lifestyle factors that can be behind brittle hair. These are the usual suspects that get in the way of healthy, flowing hair: heat styling, harsh treatments and smoking. The good news: A lot of this is in your own hands.
The 7 Don'ts for extremely dry, straw-like hair
There are several reasons for this. First, smoking inhibits blood flow to the hair follicles and negatively affects the supply of nutrients. Second, smoking causes oxidative stress 5 . The result? The hair appears dull and brittle. Plus: The resulting free radicals can cause the hair follicles to atrophy and send them into the transition phase prematurely.
It gets even worse: Smoking makes your hair turn gray faster . Various studies point to this connection 6 .
2. Too much UV light.
You probably know this: After a long summer, your hair appears lightened, but is often drier than in the winter months. One reason for this is the sun's rays. UVB rays damage hair proteins such as keratin, which makes up the main component of our hair with a proportion of up to 95%. The resulting damage to the hair substance is fatal: dryness, a rough hair structure, straw-like hair, less shine, dull hair and hair breakage 7 .
You should also protect your hair from UVA rays. They damage the coloring pigment melanin - and in this way (as a side effect) they are responsible for the brightening effect of the sun's rays.
3. Bleaching and conventional dyeing.
Chemically colored hair is generally more susceptible to dryness, breakage and frizz. Bleaching and coloring opens the cuticle layer of the hair . This is the only way the bleach can penetrate the hair shaft and react with the melanin 8 . The keratin of the hair substance is also damaged. Since the cuticle layer is now porous, the hair structure often appears rough and dull.
If your hair is bleached, it needs particularly intensive care to avoid strawy hair. Our tip: integrate a nourishing hair oil into your routine. More on that below.
4. Brushing or combing wet hair incorrectly.
When your hair is damp, it is particularly vulnerable to the friction that comes with brushing and combing. That's why it's super important to proceed gently here. Because wet hair can be stretched very well (and supposedly easier to tame), we often underestimate how much we strain the hair. The problem: Even a stretch of more than 30% causes irreparable damage in the form of brittle hair 8 . Rubbing vigorously with a towel is also a no-go for hair health!
5. Going to bed with wet hair.
See previous point: Because wet hair is so sensitive, it is advisable not to go to sleep with wet hair. When you move at night, the resulting pressure and friction can also cause hair breakage and a rough, brittle hair structure.
6. Overdoing it with heat styling.
Admittedly, completely foregoing the use of a curling iron, hairdryer and straightener is not for everyone. Nevertheless: the less your hair comes into contact with the “hot irons”, the better for your hair health. Save heat styling for special occasions and red carpet events. The high temperatures of such styling tools damage the keratin of our hair 9 and make it brittle and dull over time.
7. Wearing hairstyles that are too tightly tied.
Do you like the clean look - and without a tightly pulled back sleek back hairstyle no one can get you to the front door? Then you should urgently give your hair a break. Because: The strong pull that occurs on the hair roots with tight hairstyles can promote hair loss. And if you also straighten your hair before combing, you increase the risk of hair breakage and straw-like hair even more in the long term 9 .
In the long run, your hair can no longer be tamed without a straightener - a real downward spiral.
Keep straw hair soft again: 7 Do's for your routine
1. Make your hair wash a mini spa event.
It is best to use a gentle shampoo from natural cosmetics to wash your hair and make sure to keep the water temperature lukewarm. Instead of a conditioner, we recommend a real insider tip against straw-like hair: the acidic rinse . It works like a natural descaler and gently closes the porous cuticle of the hair.
You can easily do the shine secret against brittle hair at home. Simply add 1 tablespoon lemon juice or 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar to a 1 liter water bottle. Rinse your hair with it at the end of shampooing – voilà!
You can read detailed instructions in our blog So beautifully glossy: 6 tips for naturally shiny hair .
2. Use our hair oil as a nourishing glow elixir.
Straw hair often appears dull due to the roughened hair structure. In addition, brittle hair cannot retain moisture as well as healthy hair. If you want to protect your hair from moisture loss, prevent hair breakage and ensure healthy shine, our light hair oil is a real miracle weapon.
The nourishing hair oil from FIVE with vegan squalane ensures healthy hair with a Rapunzel feeling . Because it makes it easier to comb and acts as a heat protectant, it protects your hair structure and gives silky, smooth hair. Simply add one or two drops of the leave-in hair oil to the lengths after washing and enjoy intensively nourished, silky, shiny and supple-soft hair. Note: The hair oil is suitable for thick hair that tends to have too much volume. Hair oils are generally too heavy for fine hair.
Discover the vegan hair oil for strawy hair in the FIVE shop now!
3. Try a DIY plant-based hair tonic.
Isn't brittle hair the only thing standing between you and healthy, flowing hair? If you are also bothered by dandruff, itching, etc., use the power of fresh herbs specifically for your hair care. Because this much is certain: healthy scalp = healthy hair.
Make a strong tea using freshly picked herbs from the garden (or balcony). Let this cool and pour it over your scalp. Don't rinse!
These are our 5 favorites:
- Chamomile – for dry hair
- Rosemary – for fine hair
- Nettle – for dandruff
- Nasturtium – for itching
- Lavender – for oily hair
4. Switch to plant dyes when dyeing your hair.
Give your hair a break from years of bleaching and bleaching. How about darker colors or elegant red for a change? This works great with plant-based color pigments . They coat the hair like a protective film with a color effect without stressing it or irritating the scalp. Quite the opposite: They make the hair shine healthy and have an intense color - they also strengthen the hair structure.
5. Create heatless overnight curls - without a curling iron.
We highly recommend this hyped social media trend for your beauty sleep . Even if it works completely without heat. Perfect for protecting straw-like hair from the damaging effects of curling irons and hot air brushes. All you need to create bouncy curls overnight is a special band. The individual strands of hair are wrapped around the band using a specific technique - you can find numerous instructions online.
6. Strengthen your hair with a scalp massage.
... best in conjunction with a revitalizing hair oil . A scalp massage can help stimulate hair growth and counteract diffuse hair loss by providing better blood flow to the hair follicles. To do this, simply massage your scalp gently with your fingertips, just like you would when shampooing your hair. Start first at the hairline on the forehead and then work your way from the top of your head over the temples to the back of the head.
If you want, you can leave the oil on overnight. If you distribute it along the lengths, it can help to gently tame straw-like hair. Wash out the next morning.
7. Take a close look at your diet.
If you don't have enough important micronutrients , this will have a visible impact on your hair health. The following beauty aids are particularly important for:
- Iron : Iron deficiency is linked to diffuse hair loss 2 . If you eat a predominantly plant-based diet, good sources of iron such as green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds and kernels, as well as dried fruits, legumes and grains such as quinoa and millet should often be on your menu. The German Nutrition Society (DGE) recommends an intake of 10 to 15 milligrams per day.
- Zinc : Zinc deficiency can promote hair loss 3 . The valuable trace element is found in whole grains, nuts and seeds as well as legumes. According to the DGE, women cover their needs with 7 to 10 milligrams of zinc per day.
- Vitamin D : A deficiency of the important “sunshine vitamin” can also stand in the way of healthy hair 3 . Our body can produce this vitamin itself – provided it receives sunlight (in moderation!). But it is also found in mushrooms and avocados. According to the DGE, the daily requirement is 20 micrograms per day.
- Biotin : (Vitamin H) has a special influence on skin, hair and nails. It activates the metabolism and thus promotes the formation of new hair roots, as biotin is responsible for the formation of keratin - the main component of hair. Vitamin biotin is particularly common in the following foods: oatmeal, wheat germ, nuts, mushrooms and soybeans.
Important : For healthy, shiny hair and youthful skin, the interaction of the nutrients you consume through your diet is important. These also include, for example, vitamin A, vitamin E, the vitamin B complex and copper. If you make sure to use the full power of plants from nature, you can effectively combat brittle, straw-like hair from the inside out.
You can read more tips on healthy foods for your beauty in the article: Your guide to the best foods for beautiful skin
Conclusion: With holistic care, you can transform straw-like hair back into soft Rapunzel hair
Hopefully this article could give you some encouragement. A holistic strategy that supports your hair health both from the inside (through a healthy diet) and from the outside (with gentle hairstyles and styling) contributes to healthy, shiny hair in the long term. You can find out everything about gentle hair washing for straw-like hair, which shampoos we recommend and the acid rinse as an alternative to conditioner in our tips in this article: So beautifully glossy: 6 tips for naturally shiny hair.
Are you still looking for a light, refining hair oil for shine and suppleness? Here you can discover the FIVE hair oil !
I wish you all the best,